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ZMF Ori (Omni) - Upcoming Semi Open Flagship

Discussion in 'Headphones (full-size)' started by levaix, May 28, 2015.
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  1. LoryWiv
    Congrats on the handsome cable, Pharmaboy.  I am awaiting a Forza Noir Hybrid balanced as well for my Ori's. How long did yours take to arrive?
  2. captkirk
    Fine looking cable.  How's the braiding?  Stiff?  I picked up a VE-Clan balanced for my PM-2 and while I love the look and "substance" of the cable, the braiding is stiff and I get a bit of abrasion noise when the R/L leads touch or rub together.  Hopefully it breaks in a loosens up a touch.
  3. Pharmaboy
    "There's the rub," as they say. The F.A.W. dedicated thread on Head-Fi devotes much time to that, like all hand-built cable mfrs. The general consensus was it takes ~4 weeks (order date to cable arrival)...sometimes up to 5 weeks.
    Mine took 6 weeks, door to door. I was getting very antsy toward the end. It took a full 10 days to arrive via registered mail, shipped from Poland.
    However, to keep things in perspective, several other well regarded cable makers--Norge; and DHC, the one ZMF can order as part of a headphone order (big bucks)--are fully twice that. "12 weeks" is typical for both.
    I'm going to judge Forza a lot less on shipping time, and a lot more on sound. It also should be said that Matt, the owner, is a pleasure to deal with. Very responsive.
  4. Pharmaboy
    The braiding is very soft & pliable. The cable feels soft to the touch; it gives easily, coils very readily, etc. Zero abrashion. In fact, there seems to be no microphonics (I barely listened, beyond check both channels were there).
    But so far, this cable looks like a real pleasure to use.
  5. George Taylor
    I think my Ori's are finally starting to get burnt in. I'll be honest, the first few days had me wondering if it was a mistake buying them. I don't know if it's been common for others, but they were ridiculously dark. To the point I was worried they might be defective. There was almost no treble to them. I'd listen to anything, and drum cymbals were non existent. But thank god, today I tried them again for the first time in a couple days, and they sound "normal". Or at least more like I expected them to sound. Now, I haven't been playing them for days on end just to break them in. But I have had them going for quite a few hours. Looking forward to how they end up now that they got over that hump.
  6. Pharmaboy
    I burned my Ori in ~150 hrs, based on my usual practice w/headphones & associated electronics; also on various comments here & elsewhere to the effect that these headphones benefit from burn-in. Beyond checking their channel balance (basic "is this thing working properly?" stuff), I didn't listen to them seriously until post burn-in. I loved that sound right away.

    I just listened to them today, along w/a ZMF Eikon (thanks to a local Head-Fi pal). Fascinating contrast. At least with the stock Ori lambskin pads (and more on certain SS amps than others) my Ori hardly lacks in treble--specifically, lower treble/upper midrange, which IMO is slightly elevated compared to the rest. Along with the rather amazing planar bass and overall spaciousness of sound, it makes for a "well lit" sonic landscape.

    Have to stress that this is rather subtle, more evident on my extremely dynamic V281 than on the Liquid Carbon or other amps. I also heard it more easily/clearly w/the Eikon there for comparison (that is an amazing headphone design--very flat, great "technicalities, but also very pleasing top to bottom, not bright or fatiguing at all).

    So keep burning them in. I used pink & brownian noise mp3 clips overnight on some nights, reggae w/heavy bass content & big transients other nights, and full-range classical on other nights.

    I resolved today to try the cowhide ZMF pads that I ordered w/the Ori. Not looking forward to replacing pads, but I remember a number of comments from the early days of the Omni that talked about the cowhide pads bringing a slightly enhanced bass, greater sense of space, and slightly reduced treble range. Gotta try that.
  7. whirlwind
    Let me know how this goes.

    I also have the cowhide pads, but have not tried them yet.
  8. zach915m
    Quick note - I use frontal damping in front of all our t50 driver headphones, it's acoustex paper and charcoal foam and sometimes melamine. Each headphone gets tuned to have pretty flat treble without peaks. If you want a brighter sound, just unscrew the slider clams to get the cups off the sliders, take the pads off, and remove the same amount of front damping on each side, and voila, you will have considerably more treble, splash and sizzle! By request I can also leave the front damping off the driver when the headphones ship and leave it in the baggy with the cable for later use.

    But yes, burn in does really help out the Ori, especially since the driver enclosure is settling back in after being deconstructed and put back together.
    Last edited: May 4, 2017
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  9. George Taylor
    I shall plug them into my rack system and let them run for a while then. Going to let that go and see where they wind up, not really into tearing apart my equipment for fear of messing something up.
  10. Pharmaboy
    Will do.

    Forgot to mention yesterday that I also have a pair of MrSpeakers Alpha pads...was thinking of trying them on the Ori 1st. I just love the thickness & luxurious feeling of these pads, keep hoping they'll be helpful somewhere. Since they're very similar in overall dimensions/construction to the Ori lambskin pad (except for being deeper/thicker in the back, deeper side by ~1.2"), I suspect their effect will be incremental, rather than disruptive (but we'll see).
  11. Pharmaboy
    Last night, in an attempt to modify what I hear as a slight upper midrange/lower treble "hump," I swapped the Ori's lambskin pads (Zach's preference for "smoother sound") w/the cowhide pads, which are ~1/4-1/2" thicker on the back side of the pads + somewhat more dense. The results are pretty interesting...

    There are comments in reviews of the Omni/Ori (& in this thread) to the effect that cowhide pads slightly reduce treble and increase bass. I'm not finding that to be exactly true. IMO the effect is more subtle:
    • Not only is that treble "hump" diminished, but the entire frequency range, top to bottom, seems flatter
    • The bass, if anything, is slightly shelved down now (particularly the mid-bass). But since the mid-bass was slightly shelved up to begin with, the result sounds very good.
    • The Ori's spacious soundstaging is now slightly more spacious & reverberant--but not in an annoying way. It's pretty fine sound-staging for a 95% closed back design...

    w/cowhide pads, the Ori seems to do the "technicalities" better than before. Overall it's a little less exciting, but a bit more accurate. Fascinating that a simple pad swap would tweak the sound like this.

    NOTE: I only confirmed that I was hearing a treble "hump" in my Ori after comparing it to the Eikon--a very interesting contrast. The Eikon is the flattest headphone I've ever heard, no significant spikes/dips anywhere. And yet it's slightly warm, euphonic, and exciting/dynamic (this is great tuning). To my ears, the Ori sounds somewhat different than the Eikon, with somewhat richer/more "plush" bass (planar bass), and not as much sub-bass; a little more soundstage "space" & reverberation (a relatively subtle difference)--and upper midrange/llower treble that's slightly bumped up & not quite as smooth as the Eikon.
  12. whirlwind

    Thanks very much for your findings.....much appreciated.
  13. George Taylor
    Burn in or not, I am definitely getting used to the sound signature of the Ori's. And the comfort is something that took no time to get used to. That said, these are the bassiest cans I own, hands down. They are going to be a "what am I in the mood for" kind of set for sure. If I'm in the mood for some brutal death metal, they are going to be getting a work out.
  14. whirlwind
    I think I am going to have to replace my Ori cable, left channel is going out.
  15. mwhals
    That is exactly what happened to my Eikon cable and Zach sent me a new one.
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